The Best Mid-Life Crisis Cars To Buy

Lamborghini Aventador Mid Life Crisis Car
Lambo Aventador Mid-Life Crisis Car

Are you in a mid-life crisis? Well here are the best mid-life crisis cars to buy! I've been a car enthusiast since the 1990s. Since then, I've owned more than 15 cars.

All middle-aged people really want are financial security, love, family, friends, and respect. They don't want to be looked upon as out of shape losers who, after 40 years, haven't done anything with their lives. Unfortunately, people rarely reach mid-life without some sort of deficiency or regret.

In mid-life, the last thing you want to do is buy a car you can't afford, and thereby financially ruin the second half of your life! After all, this is a personal finance site where we tether income to specific goals and expenses.

In order to ensure fiscal responsibility during mid-life, the logical conclusion is to establish a Mid-Life Crisis Fund (MLCF) in preparation for a particular extravagant expense. The sooner you can establish a MLCF, the larger your fund will be to waste.

If you want the $500,000 Lamborghini Aventador to drive to your local grocery store, I hope your parents started a MLCF when you were born! Otherwise, you'll just have to wait until you accumulate at least a $10 million net worth.

Three Criteria Before Buying A Mid-Life Crisis Car

Here are three criteria all mid-lifers should follow before blowing a whole bunch of money on a fancy car! After the global pandemic is over, I predict mid-life crisis cars will explode in popularity!

1) Be in respectable shape.

If we're over 40, I say we have the right to be a little out of shape. Instead of rocking 20-22 BMI bodies like doctors recommend, I think mid-lifers should be allowed to flirt with up to a 27 BMI. Anything over 30 is obese and too unhealthy. 

Thank goodness the need to be in incredible shape dissipates with the more money we have! We've all seen plenty of hideous folks go out with much more attractive people thanks to their riches.

2) Accumulate at least a $500,000 net worth.

In addition to being a little pudgy in our physical appearance, mid-lifers should also be allowed to have some slack to follow my more humane Net Worth Rule For Car Buying instead of my more stringent 1/10th Rule For Car Buying

Mid-lifers have been accumulating wealth for ~20 years, and earned the right to live it up a little by allocating 5% of their net worth to the purchase of a dream car instead of being restricted to spending 10% of their gross income on a car.

3) Must have a Mid-Life Crisis Fund at least two years old.

Finally, every financially responsible mid-lifer should have established a MLCF because that shows foresight and planning. Ideally, your MLCF covers the entire cost of the vehicle. But let's go with the rule that the MLCF should be large enough to buy at least 25% of the vehicle since as a mid-lifer, you might want to simply lease the vehicle for three years and get it out of your system.

With the above three criteria firmly in mind, here are the best mid-life crisis cars for you! All cars are top-rated for their class. The cars are exhilarating, over the top for what you really need, and will probably get you more attention than you ever want. Luckily, tinting your windows won't run more than $500.

The MSRP prices are for the base models. Prices can easily rise by 50% above MSRP, which is why I've categorized the cars by minimum, not maximum, net worth break points of $500,000, $1,000,000, $2,000,000, and $5,000,000+.

Related: Own One Car For Show, One Car For Dough


If you have a BMI under 27, have a net worth of at least $5 million, and a MLCF of at least $100,000. Once you have about $5 million, you start resting easy. That said, the ideal net worth amount to retire with is over $10 million.

Tesla Roadster 2022. MSRP: $250,000. Lease: $3,000/month. Electric. 0-60 in 1.9 seconds. As a Tesla shareholder, I cannot be more excited about this car!

Should I Get An Electric Vehicle (EV)? The Pros And Cons

Ford GT. MSRP: $400,000. Lease: $6,000/month. EPA unknown. 0-60 in under 3 seconds. 600 HP. Minimum net worth required before purchase: $8,000,000.

Ford GT SuperCar for Mid-Life Crisis

Lamborghini Huracan. MSRP: $240,745. Lease: $3,600/month. 14/20 MPG. 0-60 in 2.5 seconds. 602 HP. Minimum net worth required: $4,820,000. I've been considering the Huracan Spyder as the car to buy as a revenge spend post pandemic.

Lamb Huracan Mid-Life Crisis Sports Car

Ferrari 458 Italia. MSRP: $243,900. Lease: $3,650/month. 12/18 MPG. 0-60 in 3 seconds. 562 HP. Minimum net worth needed: $4,878,000. This may be the most beautiful mid-life crisis car to buy. Love the Ferrari!

Ferrari 458 Italia Mid-Life Crisis Car

Acura NSX. MSRP: $157,800. Lease: $2,700/month. Hybrid. HP 573. 0-60 unknown. Minimum net worth needed: $3,156,000. These cars are pretty good value. But you hardly see any of them around for some reason.

Acura NSX Mid Life Crisis Sports Car

McLaren 570S Coupe. MSRP: $184,900. Lease: $3,100/month. 0-60 3.2 seconds. 562 HP. Minimum net worth needed: $3,700,000. I see a lot more McLarens than NSXs.

McLaren 570S Coupe Mid-Life Crisis Sports Car

Best Mid-Life Crisis Cars To Buy Tier II

If you have a BMI under 27, have a net worth of at least $2 million, and a MLCF of at least $30,000.

Porsche 911. MSRP: $85,295. Lease: $1,300/month. 19/26 MPG. 0-60 in 3.6 seconds. 430 HP. Minimum net worth needed: $1,706,000.

Porsche 911 Mid-Life Crisis Car

Ranger Rover Sport HSE SuperCharger. MSRP: $112,000. Lease: $1,841/month. 14/19 MPG. 0-60 in 4.3 seconds. 550 HP. Minimum net worth needed: $2,224,000.

A new Range Rover Sport should come out in 2022 or 2023. It should be a beautiful mid-life crisis car. This was the family car I purchased when I had my son. It's been so fun to drive!

Here's a picture of my Range Rover when I took my family up to Sonoma in August 2021.

Best mid-life crisis car: Range Rover Sport HSE

Lexus LC 500. MSRP: $100,000. EPA unknown.  465 HP. 0-60 in 4.5 seconds. Minimum net worth required: $2,000,000.

Lexus LC 500 Mid Life Crisis Car

BMW 650i. MSRP: $100,000. Lease: $1,400/month. EPA 17/25 MPG. 0-60 4.1 seconds. 445 HP. Minimum net worth needed: $2 million.

BMW 650i Mid Life Crisis Car

Mercedes SL550. MSRP: $86,000. Lease: $1,300/month. EPA 20/27 MPG. 0-60 4.6 seconds. 329 HP. Minimum net worth needed: $1,720,000.

Mercedes SL550 Brabus Mid-life Crisis Car

Maserati Ghibli. MSRP: $71,850. Lease: $1,154/month. EPA 15/25 MPG. 0-60 in 4.7 seconds. 404 HP. Minimum net worth required. $1,437,000.

Maserati Ghibli S Mid Life Crisis Car

Tesla Model S. MSRP: $71,100. Lease: N/A. EPA 101 MPGe. 0-60 in 2.8 seconds for the P90D! Minimum net worth required: $1,422,000. The P90D costs about $140,000.

Tesla Model S Mid-Life Crisis Car

Best Mid-Life Crisis Cars To Buy Tier III

If you have a BMI under 27, have a net worth of at least $1 million, and a MLCF of at least $20,000. A one million net worth is the minimum net worth you should have to afford one of these mid-life crisis cars. After all, you need $3 million to be a real millionaire nowadays thanks to inflation!

BMW M4. MSRP: $66,695. Lease: $963/month. EPA 17/24 MPG. 0-60 3.7 seconds. 425 HP. Minimum net worth required: $1,334,000.

BMW M4 Mid Life Crisis Car

Alfa Romeo 4C. MSRP: $57,495. Lease: $940/month. EPA 24/34. 0-60 4.2 seconds. 237 HP. Minimum net worth required: $1,150,000.

Alfa Romeo 4C Coupe Mid Life Crisis

Chevrolet Corvette. MSRP: $56,395. Lease: $952/month. EPA 16/29. 0-60 3.7 seconds. 460 HP. Minimum net worth required: $1,128,000. The classic Corvette is definitely one of my favorite mid-life crisis cars to buy.

1963 Chevrolet Corvette Mid-Life Crisis Car

Porsche Macan S. MSRP: $53,500. Lease: $860/month. EPA 20/32. 0-60 5 seconds. 340 HP. Minimum net worth required: $1,070,000.

Porsche Macan Turbo

Porsche Boxter. MSRP: $53,000. Lease: $798/month. 22/31 MPG. 0-60 in 4.1 seconds. 330 HP. Minimum net worth required: $1,060,000.

Porsche Boxter S Mid Life Crisis Car

Audi A5. MSRP: $54,025. Lease: $834/month. EPA 18/28. 0-60 in 4.5 seconds. 333 HP. Minimum net worth required: $1,080,000.

Audi S5

Ford F-150 Raptor. MSRP: $50,000. Lease: $750/month. 500 HP. EPA 12/18. Minimum net worth required: $1,000,000.

Ford F150 Raptor Mid Life Crisis

Best Mid-Life Crisis Cars Tier IV

If you have a BMI under 27, have a net worth of at least $500,000, and a MLCF of at least $10,000. $500,000 isn't a significant amount of money. But it's four times higher than the average retirement account balance in America.

Nissan Z. MSRP: $31,000. Lease: $513/month. EPA 18/26 MPG. 0-60 5.1 seconds. 332 HP. Minimum net worth needed: $620,000.

Nissan 370Z Nismo Mid Life Crisis

Chevy Camaro. MSRP: $37,250. Lease: $561/month. EPA 14/24 MPG. 0-60 3.9 seconds. 455 HP. Minimum net worth required: $750,000.

Chevy Camaro Mid Life Crisis

Ford Mustang. MSRP: $33,250. Lease: $536/month. EPA 15/25 MPG. 0-60 4.3 seconds. 435 HP. Minimum net worth required: $665,000.

Ford Mustang 5.0 GT Mid Life Crisis Car

What If You Don't Meet The Net Worth And Fitness Criteria?

Let's say after 20+ years, you didn't bother to contribute to your 401k or IRA, never thought logically about saving money in an after tax account for liquidity, didn't hustle to make extra money on the side, thought you could never lose by having all your net worth in one asset class, and decided to let yourself go by eating one too many donuts while the world starves.

Do you get to buy a mid-life crisis car given all the kids nowadays get trophies? Of course not!

You are an adult who needs to face reality that it's time to shape up financially and physically, or else you'll become a burden to your children or taxpayers.

Consider walking, biking, or taking cheap public transportation instead. Shoot to buy your end-of-life crisis car within 40 years. To get motived, there is one surprising benefit of owning a luxury automobile that can really boost your happiness, wealth, and success.

In the meantime, here are some alternatives to mid-life crisis cars.

Crowded Bus
What's wrong with taking a bus? Free if you hang on.
Crowded Train
A train is convenient and less stressful than driving.
A family cover themselves to avoid rain in Hyderabad on Saturday. Pic:Style photo service.
A motorbike is a great cheap way to zip around the city. They are everywhere in Asia.
Beer Bike
Workout and drink beer

The Cost Of Insurance For A Mid-Life Crisis Car

Average cost of car insurance by age
Good thing car insurance costs less in middle age! Click to get a low cost insurance quote

I hope you enjoyed my selection of mid-life crisis cars. I'd happily own and drive every single one of them, especially the more high end versions of each model. 

At roughly $50,000, the best value for your money is the Ford Mustang 5.0 GT. It can easily compete with cars 2-4X the price. The exhaust pipes sound so sweet, and the Mustang heritage since 1964 is hard to beat.

Don't forget that besides the purchase price of the car and ongoing maintenance, there's also the high cost of auto insurance compared to cheaper cars. If you lease a new car, you are required by law to get comprehensive auto insurance.

Even if you decide to just buy your car, comprehensive insurance is still probably a good idea because fixing cars nowadays is extraordinarily more expense due to sheet metal you can't just pound out and complex electronics. I'd shop around online for car insurance rates to see how much insurance would cost BEFORE purchasing your mid-life crisis vehicle.

If we can shoot to stay relatively fit, while achieving a net worth large enough to afford our most extravagant desires, we'll be able to enjoy our mid-life crisis vehicles without as much guilt and enjoy our lives that much better!

Create Your Mid-Life Crisis Car Fund With Real Estate

To feel better about buying a mid-life crisis car, it's best to create a mid-life crisis car fund. This way, when the crisis hits, you've got the funds to easily splurge.

Real estate is my favorite way to achieving financial freedom because it is a tangible asset that is less volatile, provides utility, and generates income. You can easily build a real estate mid-life crisis fund through real estate crowdfunding.

In 2016, I started diversifying into heartland real estate to take advantage of lower valuations and higher cap rates. I did so by investing $810,000 with real estate crowdfunding platforms.

Today, my real estate crowdfunding investments across America generate roughly $80,000 a year in passive income. My total passive income is roughly $310,000.

Take a look at my two favorite real estate crowdfunding platforms. Both are free to sign up and explore.

Fundrise: A way for accredited and non-accredited investors to diversify into real estate through private eFunds. Fundrise has been around since 2012 and has consistently generated steady returns, no matter what the stock market is doing. For most people, investing in a diversified eREIT is the way to go. 

CrowdStreet: A way for accredited investors to invest in individual real estate opportunities mostly in 18-hour cities. 18-hour cities are secondary cities with lower valuations, higher rental yields, and potentially higher growth due to job growth and demographic trends. If you have a lot more capital, you can build you own diversified real estate portfolio. 

The Best Mid-Life Crisis Cars To Buy is a Financial Samurai original post. After going through such a grind since 2020 due to the pandemic, it's time to live it up and revenge spend! Personally, I'm looking to buy the new Range Rover Sport redesign in 2023 or 2024. I'm also looking to buy the latest Lamborghini Huracan.

The YOLO Economy is here baby! Our investments have done well. Therefore, we might as well spend more of our gains. At the end of the day, we can't take our wealth with us.

About The Author

71 thoughts on “The Best Mid-Life Crisis Cars To Buy”

  1. When the government remunerates survivors of war more than $1,000 and a kick in the arse, then we can talk. Income inequality is dividing humanity.

  2. Alexis Wood

    Great read people.

    I have to agree with the classic cars, while we all aspire to have the newest/latest and greatest car nothing beats a classic.

    At 37yrs I opted last year for a 2002 R34 GTR M-Spec Nur in Jade green with low mileage and loads of Nismo goodies, only 250 made and the increase in value over the last year has doubled and its still rising! I bought the R34 only as an investment to help me along to one of my all time greats below while keeping the M3 as my daily:

    AC Cobra 427
    Aston Martin DB5
    Early E-Type Jaguar

    To me these three cars above are the most beautiful ever designed and I challenge anyone to dispute this (yes two are British)… the best thing is you can be any weight, be any age and be totally bald, but when driving any of these three cars not look a total fool or out of place (which is the issue with Ferrari and Lambo’s post 50).

    1. If you are worried about looking like a fool driving something at any age than you have already lost. You are a fool.

      Someone may watch you crash and burn in your fool car, and by 5pm that day will be more concerned with what they are having for dinner that night than your life.

      Think about that when you wonder who considers you a fool for driving an exotic car.

  3. What is the connection between BMI and a car purchase? Is the argument that you should pretend you don’t have any money and buy a bike, the riding of which then gets you in shape? That instead of a car payment you should pay for a gym membership and a personal trainer? It’s not like I disagree with getting in shape, I just don’t understand what it has to do with buying a car. And there are so many other things you could argue should be taken care of before a mid life crisis car, such as funding your children’s education or paying for marriage counseling, so why is BMI singled out?

  4. I don’t think I have ever seen these cars in our smaller city. The mustang yes, but most of the others no as much. I don’t think folks who can afford these cars would want to subject them to Canadian winters!

  5. What if your mid life crisis fantasy involves two vehicles: A diesel pickup truck (60-70k) and an Airstream Classic 30 ($127k to start)

    Would one get a higher allowance since it serves not only as a MLC vehicle but also a mobile vacation spot? It is also two assets instead of one and Airstreams hold their value so well you can take out a 20 year loan on one.

  6. Gareth @ Investment Road to Freedom

    Great list and it’s great to dream. My goal is a Porsche Boxster and if my investments and savings go well over the next 15 years who knows…..

  7. Sam, while all of these are great choices, you must know that the only real choice is the Porsche 911! And don’t just look at the new models- the 997s are great cars, and the vintage models are just as fun, with the added bonus of appreciating rather than depreciating!

  8. In a follow up post you should ask who bought, or is considering buying a MLC. From the comments, it sounds like you are pushing some forward. You should get a 2% commission on all sales, so you can grow your MLC fund faster. Or donate it to help prove you don’t have a crisis.

  9. Bill Yanusaites

    While I dont exactly fit your parameters of a mid lifer, I bought the Camaro SS convertible at age 59.
    My 89 yr old dad,got to enjoy several months of top down rides before his death.
    These memories can never be duplicated and the car was plenty fast enough for both he and I.

  10. My favorite post yet! Sounds like i can finally get a 911 with room to spare (if only my wife would agree).

  11. I kinda get the idea. I am at mid-life now. What confuses me is: how do you practice stealth wealth and drive some of these beauties? FWIW, I drive a 14-year-old in good condition Honda

    1. 90% black tinted windows with 11-99 Chapter license plate holders so cops leave you alone!

      Also: don’t tell your friends and don’t drive the car to a heavily public setting.

  12. Sam, big fan! Love every article. Have a very similar upbringing as yours (migrated to US at 18) so the thought process hits home.

    What about a quarter life crisis car by the same standards as above? I’m 25, fit the profile of the 911 (2m+ in self made NW) and I really really want an Audi R8. Ive been driving a 7yr old Altima all this time and it doesnt make me too happy. But being a super stingy person, I dont get rid of it.

    2yrs ago I went and bought myself a Yamaha R6, but the excitement has worn off and I live in New York so a motorbike doesnt quite cut it in the cold.

    So what do you think? Do the same metrics apply to a quarter-life crisis car? Or should I keep doing what I am doing and gift myself an Aventador for 30th birthday?

    1. A $2M+ NW by age 25 is awesome! Please share how you did it and what industry / business are you in?

      If the R6 didn’t thrill you (I took it up to 130 MPG in Oahu), then I’m not sure a sports car will thrill you! An Aventador is sweet though.

      It all depends on how bullish you are about your income growth at 25. Where do you see your net worth at age 30, 35, 40 etc?

      The benefit of being middle-aged is that you already know what your net worth is. At 25, there’s a lot of unknowns as nothing good tends to last forever due to life cycles.

      If you get a Aventador, I’d like to take it for a spin!

      1. Back in 2008, I came to America with $12k on me and a $50k student loan back in my home country (most I could get). Im pretty sure my parents handed over 90% of their lifes savings to me for this. By sophomore year, all the money ran out and I didn’t wanna be deported. Love ‘murica :) In addition to 3 min-wage jobs on campus, used to work at a gas station on Long Island. One snowy day, saw “co-workers” playing a card game with real money on the table. Got excited seeing so much money on the table and asked them to teach it to me. Turned out I was pretty good at poker. After few weeks practicing, started going to Atlantic City every weekend and made very very good money – paid off tuition, loans, left the $7.15 jobs and later started an import/export business. Saved all the money from poker/business and started buying real estate around NYC in 2010-12 when it was pretty cheap.

        Graduated in 2012 with 3 majors from a non-target school and have been working at Goldman ever since (Didn’t I tell you earlier I have a very similar story as yours :)). Make about 225k at the primary job and rent-roll from my properties gets me another 250k. Just got married and wife makes 125k plus RSU’s. Wife is a trust fund baby with the trust fund in the 8-digits but I’m not gonna factor that into my income/NW calculations yet (but the mental security from it does allow me to take more risks). We own our condo and car and everything else outright and save >80% of our take home. Only major expense is travel – we’ve been to 10+ countries in the last 2yrs. The current market crash is getting me very excited with all the investing opportunities popping up. Real estate is my absolute favorite though.

        So to answer your question, I am quite bullish of my income/net worth but given the extreme turns my life has taken, I am very very confused on what I should really do with my time going forward:

        #1 keep working, move to a hedge fund and continue to do what I do (I enjoy it)
        #2 try to get into Harvard/Wharton and then just chill out for 2yrs and plan the next moves – it was always a dream to get a Harvard MBA. now it seems realizable
        #3 quit the job, and focus on starting a business. problem with this one is that I have absolutely no idea what business to start

        Ok, back to the fun stuff. Ive done 160 in NJ on the R6 many times but I can only imagine how good it would feel in Oahu :D Unfortunately, wife is making me sell the bike so now I want a car replacement. Phew! #firstWorldProblems

        1. Definitely stop doing 160 if you aren’t at the track. At your level of income you can certainly afford to ride at the track and that’s the most thrilling place to push your R6 — in the corners.

          If you want to push a bike on public roads the only answer is to get a 300 and head for the twistys, but even that is dubious.

          Hooning an R6 on public roads will kill you.

  13. Super fun article Sam! I love the way the new NSX looks and seems to be a decent value relative to some of the other sweet rides shown here. My secondary choice would have to be the Lambo Huracan – WOW… what a beaut! Now if I just won that Powerball, I could have had ALL of ’em!!

  14. Sam, what ‘s your ideal financial rule for purchasing motorbike? 1/20 of net worth for individual under 30?

  15. 5% seems excessive. I consider myself to be a car guy, owned 65 cars since age 16, now 40, $2.6 million net worth, and wouldn’t dream of $130k for a car! I’m looking at used WRX wagons and Audi S4 for $15-20k and even that feels excessive.

  16. Audi RS5 – 450hp, 0-60 in 3.8 – and a sweet-looking ride that makes a great noise. It’s just nice enough to catch your eye, without the negative associations where someone might think “Hey, an Aventador… I wonder what other nice stuff they have in their house, I think I’ll take a look.”. Alernative strategy – get one of the cheaper models on the list and spend one weekend a month in Vegas at Dream racing tearing around the track in whatever supercar you want, and let them pay for the tyres and maintenance.

    Interesting side note: The Nissan 350z (previous model to the 370) leads the stats on death-per-million. I’m not saying it’s an unsafe car, but it seems to attract people who can’t handle it.

    1. Tell me more about dream racing! Cost and format! I’ll look it up. Sounds like a bloody blast and a great MLC solution.

      But, one can’t pick anybody up after. Isn’t that half the fun of owning a MLC car??

  17. Love the article! I’m a car guy and have written about my guilty pleasure for cars. Your 5% rule would take it up a huge notch. We have a Mercedes C sedan, a BMW X5 SUV, and a BMW Z4 convertible. Combined, we paid less than $120K. I’m early retiring in 2 months have been thinking about celebrating with a Porsche 911. Can’t wait to show this article to my wife! :-)

  18. Nice list and photos. Where is the AMG 63? ;-) I’ve seen plenty of businessmen with slightly greying hairs shuffle around town during the weekend in this ride.

  19. The most expensive car I’ve ever seen in my local neighbourhood was a McLaren P1, I was in awe and not surprise it was some young asian guy driving it. I was a bit nervous watching him struggling out of a parking spot and almost hitting my poor black versa! I’m more environmental conscious so if I had to choose, it would be the tesla sedan. My husband drove my crossfire back and forth to a grocery store less than 1 km away while I was on maternity leave with twins… I found it hilarious that he would find any excuse to drive my car…even to fetch diapers.

  20. I’m right on track… and, to the curmudgeon above, my kids love to ride in it! Investing in parenting doesn’t preclude enjoying a spirited drive and remarkable engineering.

  21. Might I propose you just rent a high end car when you want to use one? Or at least by one used with low miles like I did – bmw Z4 with 21k miles was a pretty sweet buy a few years ago at $30k. Don’t worry, I generate some nice income with it, exceeding the costs of my monthly payments for about 8 months of the year :) and just 2% interest on my loan!

  22. I must be old.

    Meant in humor, I’m sure. But perhaps it’s that I’m raising my children, and that is my success or failure as a person, or I just don’t care. But somehow the thought of spending that much money on any of these cars is abhorrent.

    I’ll stick with my affordable, reliable used cars, and invest my money and attention in my family.

  23. The way to own an exotic is to not buy it new. But 3-4 years after most depreciation hit. After that its value depends on mileage.

    Finance for 60-72 months. Drive one year. Sell it. Your TCO will be much lower than you think, even taking maintenance and insurance into account.

  24. I have an old Tacoma that I bought new (2002) with a TRD supercharger. Same truck today would be $42k+super, so pretty close to the Raptor in price. Does it count as a MLC car if you put 200k miles on it?

  25. I have to say that the Acura NSX and Mercedes SL550 are amazingly beautiful cars (and I wish I had the net worth to afford them).

    Ahh but a man can dream…

  26. As an fan of (admittedly eccentric/weird) cars, I don’t agree with your outlook here too much (except for the classic corvette, maybe). New cars, especially new luxury cars, depreciate like a ton of bricks (actually worse – as I would imagine bricks hold their value pretty well?).

    Classic is the way to go. Buy an early 70s Alfa Romeo GTV, BMW 3.0 CSI, Mercedes Pagoda, or a classic 911 (lately the market for old 911s has been horribly inflated though). If you want some modern comforts or a unique high quality interpretation, get a Singer. These cars give you all the performance you could actually want/use out of a mid-life crisis car, have way more character than most new cars, and you won’t look like a tool driving around in one.

    Also, best part is – they will APPRECIATE. You can get in to all the suggestions outside of a Singer for less than $100k easily, and they will all only increase in value. If you want to spend more I’m sure you can find something even rarer/fancier like an old Gullwing Mercedes and reap even more $$$ over time.

    Outside of family cars that I look at as appliances, I apply this same mentality to daily drivers as well. There are definite anomalies in the car markets out there that you can take advantage of to save/make money via appreciation as you own a car. Out of my last 3 non-appliance cars I’ve sold two of them for a profit after owning them for a few years, and my current car estimated market value is about 300% of what I paid for it (it was a cheap old car but it’s easy to see where prices are going). From Subaru STis never depreciating to BMW E39 M5s and E46 M3s that are already on the upward trend you can easily get all the utility, luxury, and performance you could want with one of these used cars and not get killed on depreciation (hopefully the opposite) and stay under the radar with some understated restraint.

    1. Subaru STIs, M5s, and M3s are trending upwards? Unbelievable! I actually don’t believe it.

      But, if you can get your hands on one of the new Ferarris or Lambos early, you can turn around and flip them for a profit.

      1. STis depreciate, but very very slowly. Just look at prices on craigslist for even a 5 year old car, can’t find one for much under brand new MSRP. Those specific M5 and M3 models are on the upward trend – largely because they’re seen by enthusiasts as the “last true/best” M# before things got all electronic and lost their visceral feel.

    2. Yes I agree with this. Classics will be a safer bet + much more unusual and you get a different reaction from people. You’d be surprised how many people come up to you to talk about your old car. I went for a BMW Z3M Coupe – really rare, amazing looks and more than enough performance for anyone! Someone actually followed me home to ask if I was selling it! Bit spooky but turned out to ok

      1. The Z3M Coupe is one of my favourite cars – almost bit the bullet on one a few years ago but it had a dodgy history. Prices are through the roof now, especially for later models with the S54 engine, so probably out of my league at this point. In either form it’s such a unique and amazing car though. Hang on to her!

  27. Early mid-life crisis

    Financial Samurai — I have two very important questions for you that have hounded me for the past few months. I am a few years short of 40 (mid-30s now), but I recently prematurely pulled the trigger on a MLC car. My wife and I have been driving two Hondas for a few years, both of which we still have. I leased the MLC car because I just wanted to get it out of my system. Two questions: (1) Because I can already tell that I confirmed my suspicions that I am not a car guy and will just go back to driving 2 Hondas after the lease (mostly because I don’t derive 5x value from the car that costs 5x as much money), should I keep both Hondas or dump one of them? The issue is that car will sit with little use and depreciate over the next 3 years while I have the lease, but it does save me from needing to buy a new car in 3 years or buy a used car without really knowing the car’s history. (2) Because this is a lease, which financial metric do I use to see if this was a financially prudent decision? The lease payment and MSRP do not match with what you have above. What I mean by this is a Lambo could represent more than 5% of my net worth, but if I can lease it for far less than the lease payment you have listed above, which do you look at? For example, I can lease a car that is well over 6% of my net worth for 3% of my annual gross income. How does this change the calculus? Thanks for your insight on this and always!

    1. I’m glad you leased your MLC so you won’t be stuck with it for more than 3 years! Don’t tell me you JUST leased the car and are already sick of it?

      Whether you buy or lease, I always go buy the 1/10th rule and 5% of Net Worth rule for the original value of the car.

      What did you buy (year and make) and what is your net worth? I would probably just keep the lease. It’s only 3 years of bleeding money if you’re finances are sound.

      1. Early mid-life crisis

        Brand new Maserati. It’s about 6.4% of net worth but I’m leasing it for about 3.1% of my gross income per year (which sounds high to me). I just got the car and it already lost its appeal. My question to you wasn’t if I should keep the lease but rather I should dump one of my owned cars because I won’t get much use out of it for the next 2-3 years but the downside is then I will need to get a new car in 3 years and that’s even more lost money. I just hate watching it sit there and depreciate.

  28. Cattle rustler

    Say what? But but my neighbor makes 200k and has a Mercedes, RR Sport, and a Q7!

    Hahahaha just kidding. I’ll be laughing in a couple of years. He’s a federal employee either way so he’s pensioned.

    1. I’ve seen way too many federal employees buy a luxury vehicle upon retirement. Contrary to popular belief most federal employees only make about 1% per year for retirement (i.e., a person working 30 years would get 30% of their salary). These kind of people usually come back as contractors.

  29. Wow what a fun post. This must have taken you a long time to put together! If I had to pick from this list I’d go with the Nissan Z. It’s the cheapest and I like Japanese cars. I like small eco city cars even better though that have 4 doors and in the $20k range versus $30k. Two doors look cool but I like the convenience of 4 so much more too.

  30. I’d go for the Mercedes SL. I’d love to buy a convertible again. We’re not saving to buy a midlife crisis car. Maybe when the kid is out of the house…

  31. I’ve had a Ford Raptor. It was excellent. I bought it for $56,000, drove it for two years and put about 15,000 miles on it (including some pretty hard miles…), and sold it for $51,000 18 months ago. Probably the best $5,000 I’ve ever spent.

    My next mid-life crisis car is likely to be the Ford Focus RS.

  32. What if my elixir is not a car, but if I had my druthers, I would want to buy a 2011 Citation Mustang for $2,000,000. What would my net worth need to be?

  33. Come on Sam… you know you REALLY want the Range Rover. You’ve been dreaming of this car since your 20s…………

  34. Nearly all of your mid-life crisis cars are too small; just because it’s a midlife crisis doesn’t mean you can disengage from reality altogether. If you’re going to be driving a mid-life crisis car you need enough room for your golf or tennis bag and a 24 pack of water bottles.

    My dad (age 55) bought an almost new truck recently, and remarked that if he had known better he would have bought the crew cab to have more room for tennis or swimming gear.

  35. Great list. Definitely using some dressed up versions of cars in some of the pics though (love that blue M6!). Only thing I would add is a Nissan GTR. Although impossible to beat for performance per dollar (except maybe the aforementioned Mustang GT 5.0).

    Is the assumption here that these cars would be purchased in addition to an existing daily driver? If so, it would also be interesting to put together a list of cars that would check all boxes (daily driver AND fun) while perhaps being a little more fiscally responsible. On a list like this is where the Model S really starts to shine. Would also add an BMW M5, MB E63, Maserati Ghibli S, Audi RS7, Porsche Panamera Turbo, and maybe even a MB G63.

    The current versions of those types of cars is probably what I will have to decide between in 10 years or so (better get started on my fund!).

    Last, if you couldnt tell, I’m a big fan of any of your posts relating to cars… keep up the good work!

    1. I was thinking about the Nissan GTR, but the car is ugly, and still costs $100,000. There are so many better cars than the GTR. I did add the Maserati Ghibli S though. Let me consider adding the Audi S5. It is a sweet coupe.

  36. What an interesting and entertaining post. To put things into perspective, some of these exotic leases cost less than your typical SF one bedroom apartment!

    1. I know right? Which means them so cheap if you live in a place like SF or Manhattan.

      Can you imagine living in the MidWest for $1,000 a month in a $200,000 house? How do you ever justify buying a car more than $40,000, or remodel a bathroom or kitchen? Such a huge percentage of one’s house value, rent, or income!

  37. I’m by no means close to my mid-life crisis as I’m 22, but I have my future desire on the Lamborghini Huracan. It’s sick! Sam, is it likely you’re picking one of the cars from the above list? And are there any leading candidates at this time?

    1. I think a combination of the Lambo Huracan and the Range Rover Sport Supercharged would be nice. Need a daily driver as well as a Lake Tahoe worthy car. Then it’d be nice to have a weekend driver to drive around the hills!

      1. Maserati is making an SUV soon. Also, Maseratis hold their value terribly, and you can pick up a used for discounts that rival MLP corporate debt.

        Every now and then I want a fancy car, then I remember I dont use a car 98% of the day. Ha well.

  38. Yeah would say over $3 or $5M prior to car like this. I opted for the Range Rover long wheelbase Supercharged. I love it. Cars a complete waste of money though.

  39. Already bought it! 2013 Camaro SS/RS convertible, used, only 2000 miles, paid for, BMI 22 , net worth $900,000. Having a blast!

  40. Sam,

    If I’m picking from the list, I’m interested in the Raptor and the Tesla. The Raptors are amazing to drive off road; my old military installation purchased a few for patrolling the desert along our Southern border and they are basically indestructible. The Tesla is just a great technological feat, and I generally appreciate fine work (auto summon, auto pilot, etc). Not crazy about the over the air updates and ability to monitor/disable the car, but its a voluntary choice to purchase and as long as you are aware, that’s what freedom is for.

  41. Well, it’s obvious that the Ford GT is the most American! I only will need $800k to afford its mere $400k MSRP. ‘Merca!

    (I realize that was a typo, but still couldn’t resist).

    My choice is the Tesla since I think it’s the best bang for the buck. It still looks exotic and the majority probably have no idea how much it cost. I totally agree with 5% of net worth.

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